Wednesday, September 18, 2019
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The Pastor Delivers a Box of Groceries on Christmas Eve

Christmas, 2018 Poetry Selection
Hail, darling, full of grace
Half grown, half girl, all of eighteen
That night I made pilgrimage to your trailer
Pale, sweaty, stringy blonde hair
Framing your sapphire eyes.

Mother

Christmas, 2018 Poetry Selection
Young woman, boo-boo healer,
songwriter, wonderful comforter,
mighty good, everlasting Mama,
peasant of peace,
filled with grace and grit

A Christmas Prayer

God of sun and God of snow, we thank you for the grandeur of creation, for the variety that surrounds us, for your limitless creativity.

Godde Sets the Stage for Each of Us During Christmas

What Gabriel asks of Mary is what Godde asks of each of us—just in different ways. It lies within our power of choosing, to conceive—in our hearts—the Godde who chooses us. We all stand with Mary today, summoned to an adventure filled with peril and misunderstanding and mystery and unspeakable grief . . . and joy that can turn the whole world upside down!

A Post of Christmases Past

While Reta Halteman Finger, the author of our Reta’s Reflections Bible study blog, is taking some time off to be with family and friends,  we invite you to revisit two of her earlier Christmas reflections.

The Word Became Flesh and Lived among Us

Lesson 16 - "Perhaps one reason I find this analogy meaningful is because I relate to Jesus more as a human and less as a divine figure whose feet rarely touch the ground. Becoming flesh is the point of 'Immanuel—God with us.' Too often Christians see primarily the inaccessible divinity of Jesus, and thus cannot follow him in life. As a result, they miss the point of the downward thrust of Incarnation."

The Christmas Story—When Tradition Trumps Text

Lesson 14 - "Ever since the second century, stories embroidering the canonical accounts of Jesus’ birth have become embedded in our celebrations. Every crèche gets so much wrong. Maybe we should worry less about our culture “taking Christ out of Christmas” and more about accurately reading our texts. I’ll warn you ahead of time—there was no stable, no inn, and no innkeeper."

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1 Timothy 6:1-2—The Crushing Yoke of Slavery, Part 2

Lesson 16: "Our last lesson sought to accurately situate 1 Timothy 6:1-2 in its literary and historical context. When we read selected biblical texts like this passage as eternally relevant, they can cause great damage. For centuries, slaveholders in the American South used this text to justify chattel slavery, as if God intended some people to serve as the personal property of their supposed superiors."